#1
Hello all,

20-year old guitar player here. Mainly the blues, like SRV/Jimi/Jimmy, or funk like Slovak/Frusciante, but I basically play all sorts of music when I'm just practising in my bedroom, metal/jazz/folk/classic rock you get the idea. Don't have a band or anything, no intention whatsoever, so I just need a bedroom amp.

Currently got a Keiper Les Paul (really cheapo), Line Six Spider III 15w (ok'ish, but flat sound and I never really got a good feeling from it when playing blues) and I've got a Boss DS-1 and Crybaby Wah.

I've been searching all over the internet and found multiple advices and recommendations regarding the Vox AC15VR. Found a lot of positive things, so I went online and saw 2 second-hand amps for 290 Euros, while it costs about 400+ Euros new. I bid 250 Euros for them and both sellers agreed and one very near to my house. Suddenly, today, I've found a lot of negative things on the forums here on UG, with a lot of people advising others not to buy it.. Now the big question is, for someone with my style of playing and the requirements of an amp in my bedroom (can't play loud), is this a good deal for me?

I've already agreed, could still back-out, but that's a bit rude. Though, as I got it quite cheap when compared to all others I've seen second-hand online, I could always make a few bucks out of it and go for another amp.

But before I buy it I'd like to know:

- Is this amp really an upgrade on my line-six spider III 15w, is it a good buy?
- Is it a good amp for a bedroom blues-guitarist of my age, experience and gear?
- Are there better amps available (2nd hand) for the money? (250 Euro's = 184 pounds = 281 dollars)
- Should I back-out and go for another amp? Buy it, try it out, sell it with profit and go for another?
- Am I stupid for not knowing the tube in it does fuck all and the sound won't be any better than my current amp? (that's basically a summary of the last few threads I read..)


Sorry for the long read, but as I've no idea what to expect and think anymore, I'd just really like someone to explain to me if it's a good or bad buy for someone who doesn't do anything professional, plays at a low volume and hasn't got more than 300 Euros available.

Thanks in advance!
#2
Anyone with any knowledge about this amp? I feel kinda desperate as I'm really confused as of wheter I'll be making a good choice of buying it tonight..
#3
I've looked into this amp as well. I've never actually played it so I don't have any first hand experience. Most reviews I've seen of people that actually own the amp seem very happy with it. I say at least try it out.
#4
the Vox AC15VR does not model other amps like the Line 6 spider does. You'll be pretty limited with tones, even though it does a good job of modeling vox's own AC amps quite well.


The AC15VR is like a strip down version of the vox VT/valvetronix series.

I haven't any idea why anyone would get an AC15VR when they can just buy a VT15 used for cheap and get the tone of the AC15VR in addition to other amps and effects.

But you'll just be trading a line6 spider modeling amp, for another modeling amp, from vox.

In fact, I consider the move from Line 6 spider III to the AC15VR, a downgrade where versatility and usability is concerned unless you play music that specifically uses VOX AC style amps.
#5
As noted above, I'm not convinced that's really an upgrade.

As for this "- Am I stupid for not knowing the tube in it does fuck all and the sound won't be any better than my current amp? (that's basically a summary of the last few threads I read..)"

No, because you do know. Now if you go for it anyway, that's an entirely different question.

Sorry to say but as of yet there isn't much that does blues as well as a good tube amp.

Instead of muddling through with another crap amp, either save your money or if you MUST spend it, use it on a good interface and use your computer as your modeler. There are loads of very good models available for little or nothing out there and they are getting better every day.
“Ignorance more frequently begets confidence than does knowledge.”
Charles Darwin
#6
I'd like to thank you for the responses. You've really helped me a lot!
My train was late, so I had to wait for half an hour if I still wanted to try it out. I immediately thought: what the fuck am I doing. I've read a complete explanation from a sound engineer on here, telling others it isn't a true , yet I still hope the thing's good enough. I called the seller and told him I couldn't agree with the deal anymore as I didn't understand the amp wouldn't be an upgrade on a Line 6 15W Spider III, and he firmly agreed.

Saved my ass 250 euros thanks to you lads.

If anyone has a recommendation or advice for me regarding new amps/equipment, feel free to post a reply!
#7
Looking at Thomann, your best bets in that price range are a Vox AC4TV, a Laney Cub or maybe a Bugera V22. None of those will do metal or much past classic rock, but if you want the amp mainly for blues and funk those would be the ones to look at (new that is). You won't get a lot of clean headroom from the Cub or the AC4 but if you're only playing at bedroom level that shouldn't be a problem.

If you really want to keep playing the 'all sorts when practicing' that you mentioned in your first post, then maybe it'd be worth looking into something like a Pod and a decent set of headphones or monitors.
#8
I would get an AC4 C1 instead. Its got that VOX sound that you want and is easy to dial in a great tone. I bought one to play at home and was surprised at how good it sounds.

I originally had the Vox VT120+ amps and was pleased with the tone but it was nowhere as good as the tone I got out of the all tube AC4
"We all have idols. Play like anyone you care about but try to be yourself while you're doing so." - BB King

"The thrill is being able to do it...even if you play it badly" - The Edge.

8 Guitars, 4 Amps, 3 Multi Pedals...and never done!
#9
Quote by Dan_5893
Looking at Thomann, your best bets in that price range are a Vox AC4TV, a Laney Cub or maybe a Bugera V22. None of those will do metal or much past classic rock, but if you want the amp mainly for blues and funk those would be the ones to look at (new that is). You won't get a lot of clean headroom from the Cub or the AC4 but if you're only playing at bedroom level that shouldn't be a problem.

If you really want to keep playing the 'all sorts when practicing' that you mentioned in your first post, then maybe it'd be worth looking into something like a Pod and a decent set of headphones or monitors.


Just curious, when you talk about clean headroom in the Cub. Is that the 10 or the 12? Don't want to hijack the thread but I've been looking at the Cub 12r online but there's nowhere near me to demo one.
#10
Used Peavey Vypyr Tube 60. Will get you bedroom tones for pretty much anything. I'd go for the older models. The other solid state models are okay too, but if you can get the Tube 60 go for that.
Last edited by Will Lane at Sep 25, 2015,
#11
Quote by dombar335
Just curious, when you talk about clean headroom in the Cub. Is that the 10 or the 12? Don't want to hijack the thread but I've been looking at the Cub 12r online but there's nowhere near me to demo one.


It depends on what sort of volume you're looking at playing at. The 10 will struggle to stay clean for anything other than bedroom playing, partially because of the 10 inch speaker. The 12R is 15W I believe, so will have more headroom than the 10 and move more air because of the bigger speaker, so it will be a bit louder too.
#12
Quote by sfx
the Vox AC15VR does not model other amps like the Line 6 spider does. You'll be pretty limited with tones, even though it does a good job of modeling vox's own AC amps quite well.


The AC15VR is like a strip down version of the vox VT/valvetronix series.

I haven't any idea why anyone would get an AC15VR when they can just buy a VT15 used for cheap and get the tone of the AC15VR in addition to other amps and effects.

But you'll just be trading a line6 spider modeling amp, for another modeling amp, from vox.

In fact, I consider the move from Line 6 spider III to the AC15VR, a downgrade where versatility and usability is concerned unless you play music that specifically uses VOX AC style amps.


I kinda gotta go with this.
If you want the Vox sound with your budget, you are better going with an AC4 or one of the Valvetronix amps.
The AC4 will sound better, but the Valvetronix amp will give you a lot more versatility.
#13
Quote by CodeMonk
I kinda gotta go with this.
If you want the Vox sound with your budget, you are better going with an AC4 or one of the Valvetronix amps.
The AC4 will sound better, but the Valvetronix amp will give you a lot more versatility.


I can second that. I have tried the valvetronix and the AC15. The valvetronix has lots of features, but to be honest the "valve" it has in it really makes very little difference and the valvetronix does not really have that valve sound. But all the extra features will help you play your funk.

If you have your heart set on a valve amp, get a valve amp. They do sound better.

15W is loud and you won't get the volume past 2 or 3 at home (before having to turn down the volume knob on your guitar). You won't get much overdrive out of it either without a pedal at those levels. 15W is great for jam with friends, but as soon as you add a drummer, you may find 15W might not be loud enough and 30W is better.

5W at home is about right. The AC4 may be a good solution for at home. Get a bigger amp later when you want to play with a band.
#14
Lads, you've all helped me a lot. Think I've learnt more than ever about amps and my own style.

I'm now looking into the following amps:

Peavey Vypyr Tube 60 (as said above, suits a lot of styles, seen great reviews, within price range. Definitely gonna check it out at a local shop, if there's any available)

Vox AC4 C1 read about it earlier, saw it on some 2nd hand websites, looks a fine deal for a proper Vox bluesy sound. Have to think about versatality though, but it'll def be available at a local shop.

Cub 12r : the Cub is hard to find, can't find any 2nd hand, nor at an online store in the Netherlands. Thomann it is then, but that'll cost 377 Euros. Quite a lot, so it really has to be worth it though I can't check it out. Fine suggestion though, looking into some reviews and specs and from what I know (not a lot as you might figure) it looks a decent suggestion at the very least.

Fender Super Champ X2: Maybe too bluesy, definitely will have to check it out, but I've read great things about it, seems to have some neat functionalities regarding USB & effects.

Notable mentions:
What about the Vox AC10-C1 ? Seen lots of them on the 2nd hand market here in the Netherlands. I've also heard things about Fender Excelcior? Peavey Classic 30 maybe?

Furthermore, I've heard a lot about the Vox VT-series, but although it has brilliant versatality and effects, I'm really looking for a tube-sound which will make my SRV-like solo's scream like a birth-giving fat woman, who as peculiar as it is, has a voice like a Fat Tube-Screaming Feedback-pumping Vintage Strat inside a cathedral. Yeah, that kinda describes my vibe when solo'ing.

I'm also looking to get myself a pedalboard containing about 5-10 pedals, depending each's versatality, but at least a delay, reverb, big muff, tube screamer, looper and chorus, so keep in mind I'll probably don't really need an amp with a lot of features/effects, unless they're really good/better than pedals.

Thanks again for every response and suggestion, hope the thread continues & will be a guide for all other bedroom practise funkadelic/bluestastic versatile guitar players, looking to upgrade their gear. You're all great
#15
As I said in the pedals thread of yours, you should spend more money on upgrading the amp than the pedals. If you play mainly blues/lower gain, I'll recommend something Fender Tube. Maybe a Blues Jr and you could save a bit for a new guitar after that. You might could get a Hot Rod Deluxe if you go used. A lot of people sell just the cabinet housing for it so be careful. The HRD as far as metal is concerned isn't what I would choose but could work for bedroom, but it will get you everywhere else fairly easily.

If you do go the modeling route, I wouldn't worry about pedals until you want to upgrade to another amp that isn't modeling. Put the $ to a guitar.
Last edited by Will Lane at Sep 28, 2015,
#16
You're looking at a lot of the same amps I've been looking at. The only one I've actually played so far is the AC4, and it didn't have enough clean for me. I played a Blues Junior and liked it. I want to play the Super Champ next time I'm in the store. I hear a lot of good things about it.
#17
AC4 is great so I'd probably go with that.

Let me also mention Traynor YCV range and Orange Tiny Terror range, look into those as well.

Some AC30 knockoffs worth mentioning and checking out: Carvin Tweed series, Peavey Classic 30, Crate Palomino.
#20
If you intent is to get into pedals, then you might not need all the bells and whistles of the super champ XD. One you might want to consider is the Backstair Ht-5r. It is unusual in the 5W valve amp range because it has a 12" speaker and a separate effects loop for your pedals.

I just bought the HT5R, so I am a bit biased ... Best thing to do is to go down to the music store and play the ones you like. Your ears (and wallet) will tell you which one to get.